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Tw^nt\J-(%ile  Encampment 

Story  of  a  Reunion  and  the  Dedication  of  a  Tablet  Marking 
this  Historic  Spot,  at  Twenty-Mile  Stream,  August  26,  1909. 

Reprinted  from  Vermont  Tribune,  Sept.  2,  1909 

The  third  annual  Twenty-Mile 
Stream  reunion  and  basket  picnic  at 
the  District  No.  5  schoolhouse  in 
Cavendish  last  Thursday  was  much 
more  largely  attended  than  any  pre- 
vious one,  which  in  itself  is  an  evi- 
dence of  the  growing  interest  in 
these  gatherings.  Each  year  brings 
together  more  people  from  far  away 
to  greet  each  other  and  to  recall  old 
memories  of  school  days.  The  time 
was  very  largely  devoted  to  general 
sociability  and  the  renewal  and  re- 
vival of  former  friendships  and  ac- 

It  would  be  impossible  to  mention 
all  those  present  who  came  from  a 
distance  or  who  were  connected 
with  the  school  or  the  neighborhood 
in  days  long  ago;  but  one  instance 
in  particular  merits  attention.  Jas- 
per N.  Clark  of  Scottville,  Mich.,  a 
civil  war  veteran  of  the  2d  Vermont 
infantry,  met  his  old  teacher,  Mrs 
Susan  Adams  Fullerton  of  South 
Woodstock,  who  taught  the  last 
term  of  school  which  he  attended  in 
the  old  schoolhouse  in  the  fall  of  1859. 

Among  other  old-timers  present 
were  Mrs  Charles  Stearns  of  Browns- 
ville,, who  was  a  pupil  in  1855  ;  Mrs 
Sarah  Tilden  Woodward  of  Shrews- 

bury, pupil  in  1859  ;  Mrs  Clara  I.  C, 
Nye  of  Athol,  Mass.,  pupil  in  1860  j 
Mrs  Clara  Lawrence  Lamberton  of 
North  Pomfret,  pupil  in  1865;  Dj 
William  R.  White  of  Providence,  R 
I.,"  teacher  in  1869;  William  H. 
Davis  of  Boston,  pupil  in  1878;  Mr 
and  Mrs  J.  M.  Pratt  of  Ashburn- 
ham,  Mass.,  who  were  residents  in 
the  neighborhood  in  1840. 

The  next  reunion  will  be  held 
August  26,  1910.  To  insure  the  con- 
tinuation of  these  gatherings  a  per- 
manent organization  was  effected 
and  the  following  officers  were  chosen 
for  the  coming  year:  President, 
Frank  L.  Bigelow  ;  vice-president, 
Sanford  E.  Emery  ;  secretary,  Mrs 
Florence  E.  Haven  ;  treasurer,  Mrs 
James  P.  Green ;  executive  com- 
mittee, in  addition  to  the  above.  J. 
AshtonSpaulding,  Charles  P.  Chase, 
B.  F.  Sherwin,  and  Mrs  Willis  L. 


Interesting  Ceremonies  around 
the  Tablet — Historical  Reviews 
and  Personal  Reminiscences. 

After  dinner  the  large  company 
repaired,  by  team,  by  auto,  and  on 
foot,  to  the  site  of  the  Encampjnent, 
where  the  tablet  had  been  erected ; 
and  here,  for  two  hours.or  more,  the 
exercises  continued,  with  historical 

addresses,  personal  reminiscences, 
and  sundry  other  features  which 
tended  to  stir  local  pride  and  give 
Twenty-Mile  Stream  the  prominence 
it  deserved  as  historic  ground.  Now 
and  then,  in  the  interim  between 
the  speeches,  the  Ludlow  Cornet 
Band  waked  the  echoes  and  contrib- 
uted to  the  general  success  of  the 
occasion.  And  the  skies  were  most 

P.  L.  Bigelow  of  Rutland  presided 
efficiently  and  kept  thing's  moving 
briskly.  In  his  introductory  remarks 
he  said:  "It  is  indeed  a  pleasure  to 
welcome  you  here  this  afternoon, 
and  I  wish  I  were  able  to  express  to 
you  the  gratification  it  gives  to  those 
havingf  these  exercises  in  charge  to 
see  that  so  many  have  interested 
themselves  sufficiently  to  be  present 
and  assist  us  in  the  dedication  of 
this  tablet,  which  is  designed  to  lo- 
cate in  a  permanent  manner  the  old- 
est point  of  historical  interest  in 
this  section,  antedating-  as  it  does 
not  only  the  Revolutionary  war  but 
even  the  settlement  of  the  town — 
the  site  of  the  old  Twenty-Mile  En- 
campment, twenty  miles  from 
Charlestown,  N.  H.,  on  the  line  of 
the  military  road  constructed  by  the 
British  from  Charlestown,  N.  H.,  to 
Ticonderog"a,  N.  Y.,  and  which  gave 
the  name  to  Twenty- Mile  Stream." 

The  tablet  was  then  unveiled  by 
Miss  Bessie  Spaulding  and  Misses 
Christine  and  Dorothy  Big-elow, 
great  great  -  great  -  granddaug-hters 
of  Samuel  Ames  and  great-grand- 
daughters of  James  Smith,  Jr.,  both 
of  whom  lived  on  the  farm  where 
this  tablet  stands. 

Chairman  Big-elow  then  said:  "The 
stone  to  which  this  tablet  is  at- 
tached is  of  rather  unusual  dimen- 
sions, but  it  was  thought  eminently 
fitting-  and  proper  to  use  for  that 
purpose— the  capstone  of  the  Ord- 
way  mill,  long  a  landmark  on  Twen- 

ty Mile  Stream,  and  owned  and  op- 
erated for  so  many  years  by  the  two 
brothers,  D.  and  Z.  K.  Ordway,  both 
of  whom  were  old  residents  of  the 
town  and  men  of  unusually  strong 
personality.  The  credit  for  the 
erection  of  this. tablet  at  this  time 
belongs  primarily  to  James  Ashton 
Spaulding,  a  man  who  is  better  in- 
formed on  the  early  history,  geog- 
raphy and  topography  of  this  sec- 
tion than  any  man  I  know,  and  it  is 
through  his  initiative  and  energy 
that  we  are  permitted  to  dedicate  it 
at  this  time.  He  is  a  lineal  descend- 
ant from  James  Hall,  who  was  for- 
cibly impressed  into  the  service  of 
the  British  army  in  England  and 
came  to  America  as  a  sergeant ;  was 
one  of  the  force  sent  to  destroy  the 
military  stores  of  the  American 
army  at  Concord;  was  stunned  by  an 
American  bullet  and  left  on  the 
field.  As  his  comrades  were  passing 
he  heard  them  say,  "Serg't  Hall  is 
killed  !"  Remaining  perfectly  quiet 
until  the  troops  had  passed,  he  em- 
braced the  first  opportunity  to  es- 
cape and  join  the  American  army. 
He  was  among  the  early  settlers  in 
this  section  and  made  the  thirteenth 
family  to  settle  in  Cavendish.  To- 
day is  the  86th  anniversary  of  his 
death.  Is  it  strange  that  with  such 
an  ancestry  his  great-grandson 
should  be  intensely  interested  in 
matters  of  this  kind?" 

The  tablet  was  then  decorated 
with  the  national  colors  by  Mr 
Spaulding 's  three  daughters,  Misses 
Annie,  Hildie  and  Florence,  great- 
great-granddaughters  of  Sergeant 
James  Hall  of  the  British  army.  One 
of  the  flags  used  in  the  decoration 
has  been  owned  by  the  family  since 

In  introducing  Albin  S.  Burbank 
of  Proctorsville,  who  gave  the  his- 
torical address,  Mr  Bigelow  said  : 
"Your  presence  here  demonstrates 
again  that  tendency  which  is  hap- 
pily growing  of  marking  these  old 

points  of  interest.  Every  town  has 
some  landmark  which  is  worthy  of 
being  preserved  in  some  permanent 
manner,  at  least  for  local  interest. 
This  spot,  however,  is  of  peculiar  in- 
terest, inasmuch  as  that  interest  is 
not  wholly  local.  We  all  realize,  I 
think,  that  matters  of  this  kind  are 
put  off  altogether  too  long,  and  how 
much  easier  it  would  have  been 
twenty  or  thirty  years  ago  to  collect 
material  while  there  were  people 
living  who  personally  remembered 
many  features  of  interest  relative 
to  this  road  and  camp.  Nearly 
everyone  in  this  section  has  always 
known  that  Twenty-Mile  Stream  de- 
rived its  name  from  a  camp  located 
near  this  point  and  on  a  military 
road,  but  those  who  had  ever 
thought  of  the  matter  at  all  sup- 
posed the  road  had  been  built  in 
Kevolutionary  times  or  by  the  early 
settlers,  and  it  was  not  generally 
supposed  that  it  was  constructed  by 
the  British  and  even  before  the 
town  was  settled.  So  we  really 
knew  but  little  about  it  ;  and  yet 
how  much  we  might  have  known. 

"As  a  small  boy  I  recall  Captain 
Hall's  telling  me  on  one  occasion 
that  on  this  piece  of  ground  was  lo- 
cated at  one  time  a  British  camp, 
and  how  at  various  times  flintlocks 
had  been  plowed  up  here,  and  on  one 
occasion  he  remembered  that  the 
remains  of  two  men  had  been  plowed 
up  here,  and  from  the  buttons  or 
something  of  the  sort  found  at  the 
time  they  knew  them  to  be  the  *  re- 
mains of  British  soldiers.  I  under- 
stand, too,  that  he  remembered  an 
old  building  that  was,  or  had  been 
at  one  time,  a  permanent  feature  of 
the  camp.  It  is  a  fact,  too,  that 
Wm.  Smith,  born  here-  in  1800,  and 
whose  father,  James  Smith,  settled 
here  in  1790,  could  have  given  us 
valuable  information  relative  to  this 
camp.  But  all  these  opportunities 
are  past  and  gone,  and  it  now  be- 
comes necessary  to  depend  on  such 
permanent  records  as  can  be  found 

and  which  are  not  easy  to  locate. 
We  are  extremely  fortunate  in  hav- 
ing a  fellow  townsman  who  is  in- 
tensely interested  in  matters  of  this 
kind,  and  who  has  availed  himself 
of  every  known  opportunity  of  get- 
ting together  information  relative 
to  this  road,  and  is  better  informed 
on  this  subject  than  any  other  man. 
He  has  kindly  consented  to  give  us 
the  benefit  of  this  information." 

Mr.  Burbank's  Historical  Address 

We  are  assembled  to  commemorate  an  . 
event  and  mark  a  spot  which  has  much 
historic  interest,  it  being  the  principal 
camp  ground  and  stopping  place  on  the 
line  of  the  first  road  cut  through  the 
wilderness  from  Lake  Champlain  to  the 
Connecticut,  and  which  was  used  through 
the  latter  part  of  the  French  and  Indian 
war  for  transportation  of  troops  and  sup- 
plies for  the  English  army  and  later  by 
the  armies  of  the  American  revolution  for 
the  same  purpose.  This  is  historic 
ground  and  has  been  trodden  by  many 
thousand  soldiers  in  those  early  days. 

There  is  a  tradition  that  the  cannon 
captured  by  Ethan  Allen  at  Ticonderoga 
were  taken  to  Boston  over  this  route,  but 
we  are  unable  at  this  late  day  to  verify 
the  legend.  In  order  that  we  may  better 
understand  the  necessity  for  this  road 
(which  was  a  great  undertaking  for  those 
days)  I  shall  recall  some  points  in  the 
early  history  of  the  Colonies,  and  take  up 
some  of  the  important  events  connected 
therewith,  giving  prominence  to  No.  4, 
which  was  so  intimately  connected  with 
the  road. 

At  the  end  of  Queen  Anne's  war  in 
1 7 1 3  there  was  no  English  settlement  or 
lodgement  on  the  Connecticut  river  above 
Greenfield,  then  "Green  River  Farms,"  a 
.district  of  Deerfield. 

In  i7i4Northfield  became  permanently 
established  as  the  frontier  town.  During 

Tather  Rales  war  of  1722—5,  which  was 
mainly  a  rising  of  some  of  the  Indians 
tribes  led  by  the  Jesuit  priest  and  backed 
by  the  French  Governor  Vandrieul,  the 
outpost  was  advanced  up  the  west  side 
of  the  river  above  Northfield  with  the 
erection  of  Fort  Dummer,now  Brattleboro. 
"With  the  close  of  that  war  Fort  Dummer 
became  a  truck  house  for  trading  with  the 
then  peaceful  Indians  coming  down  from 
Canada  and  soon  a  slender  settlement  of 
traders  grew  up  about  it.  This  was  the 
pioneer  setttement  of  the  upper  valley  of 
the  Connecticut.  It  was  the  nucleus  of 
Brattleboro,  chartered  and  named  some 
years  later,  the  first  English  township  in 
what  is  now  Vermont.  It  remained  the 
only  upper  valley  settlement  until  about 

Fort  Dummer  was  erected  by  the  prov- 
ince of  Massachusetts  for  the  protection 
of  the  northwestern  frontier  of  Massa- 
chusetts and  Connecticut.  It  was  ordered 
to  be  garrisoned  by  forty  able  men  (Eng- 
lish) and  western  Mohawk  Indians.  The 
site  of  the  fort  is  in  the  southeastern 
portion  of  the  town  of  Brattleboro,  still 
known  as  Dummer's  meadows.  It  was 
built  under  the  supervision  of  Col.  John 
Stoddard  of  Northampton.  Lieut.  Tim- 
othy Dwight  had  immediate  charge  of  the 
work  and  was  the  first  commander  of  the 
fort.  He  was  an  ancestor  of  Pres.  Tim- 
othy Dwight  of  Yale. 

The  fort  was  built  on  what  was  known  as 
the  equivalent  lands,  which  were  four  par- 
cels of  unoccupied  tracts  along  the  west 
banks  of  the  river  between  the  present 
limits  of  Brattleboro,  Dummerston  and 
Putney,  107,793  acres  in  all,  which  Mass- 
achusetts had  transferred  to  Connecticut  in 
settlement  of  colonial  lines.  Afterwards 
Connecticut  granted  them  back  to  Mass- 
achusetts. Thirty  years  later  these  town- 
ships (complaining  of  Massachusetts  tax- 
ation) again  of  their  own  motion  shifted 
back  to  Connecticut .  Shortly  afterward 
Connecticut  sold  them  at  public  vendue 
and  gave  the  proceeds  to  Yale  college, 
j  They  brought  a  little  more  than  a  farthing 
per  acre.  The  purchase  fell  to  four  Mass- 
£  achusetts  men ;  these  were  William 
■L  Dummer,    lieutenant  -  governor  of  the 

province,  William  Brattle  of  Cam- 
bridge and  Anthony  Stoddard  and 
John  White  of  Boston.  Hence  the. 
name  of  the  fort  for  the  Governor  and  the 
town  for  the  Cambridge  man.  The.  fort 
was  a  stout  structure  built  of  yellow  pine 
and  thought  to  be  proof  against  ordinary 
assaults,  but  in  October  following  the 
completion  (1724)  it  was  attacked  by  In- 
dians and  four  or  five  of  the  garrison 
killed  or  wounded.  Subsequently  a  stock- 
ade was  built  around  it,  composed  of  stout 
square  hewn  timbers  twelve  feet  long,  set 
upright  in  the  ground,  inclosing  an  acre 
and  a  half.  This  and  No.  4  erected  later 
were  the  chief  military  outposts  until  the 
conquest  of  Canada. 

In  1740  three  families  from  Lunenburg, 
Mass.,  began  the  east  side  settlement  of 
No.  4,  which  later  became  Charlestown, 
and  in  1743  a  fort  was  erected.  Capt. 
Phineas  Stevens  was  early  there  and  be- 
came the  hero  of  No.  4.  He  was  a  soldier 
of  exceptional  ability  and  skill,  and  was 
familiar  with  the  methods  of  Indian  war- 
fare, having  in  his  youth  been  a  captive  of 
the  St.  Francis  tribe,  taken  with  his 
brother  at  Rutland,  Mass.,  during  a  raid 
of  Father  Rales  war.  Late  in  March,  1746, 
he,  having  been  employed  elsewhere,  re- 
turned with  forty-nine  men  to  No. 4,  which 
was  now  a  plantation  of  nine  or  ten  fam- 
ilies, to  save  the  fortfiom  falling  into  the 
hands  of  the  enemy,  and  arrived  just  in 
time,  for  a  force  of  French  and  Indians, 
under  Ensign  de  Niverville  was  close  up- 
on it.  On  the  19th  of  April  and  in  May 
and  June  there  were  assaults  by  the  In- 
dians and  in  July  the  fort  was  besieged 
for  two  days.  Throughout  the  rest  of  the 
summer  it  was  blockaded.  In  August  the 
enemy  destroyed  all  the  horses,  cattle  and 
hogs  in  the  settlement  and  then  withdrew. 
No.  4  was  evacuated  and  lay  deserted  un- 
til spring  1747,  when  in  March  Capt. 
Stevens  again  returned  with  thirty  rangers. 
He  found  the  fori  uninjured  and  received 
a  joyous  welcome  from  two  inmates — an 
old  spaniel  and  a  cat  left  at  the  evacua- 
tion. On  the  4th  of  April  a  body  of 
trained  French  soldiers  and  Indian  war- 
riors appeared,  [variously  estimated  at 
from  four  to  seven  hundred,  then  followed 

the  siege  which  lasted  for  five  days.  But 
Capt.  Stevens  and  his  men  stood  firm, 
and  although  the  enemy  endeavored  to 
fire  the  fort,  they  were  unsuccessful. 

Finally  at  a  parley  the  French  com- 
mander promised  if  the  men  would  lay 
down  their  arms  and  march  out,  their 
lives  would  be  spared,  otherwise  he  would 
set  the  fort  on  fire  and  run  over  the  top 
of  it.  Assembling  his  men,  the  captain 
put  it  to  vote  whether  to  fight  on  or  to 
capitulate.  All  to  a  man  voted  to  stand 
it  out  as  long  as  they  had  life.  About 
noon  of  the  fifth  day  the  enemy  pro- 
posed if  the  besieged  would  sell  them 
provisions  they  would  leave  and  not  fight 
any  more.  To  this  the  captain  replied 
he  would  not  sell  them  provisions  for 
money,  but  if  they  would  send  in  a  cap- 
tive for  every  five  bushels  of  corn  he 
would  supply  them.  Soon  after  a  few 
guns  were  fired  and  the  enemy  withdrew. 
So  ended  the  remarkable  battle  of  700 
against  30.  Of  the  enemy  many  were 
slain,  but  the  besieged  had  none  killed 
and  only  two  wounded.  An  express  car- 
ried the  news  to  Boston  and  Captain 
Stevens'  gallant  defense  won  the  admira- 
tion, expressed  in  the  gift  of  an  elegant 
sword,  of  Sir  Charles  Knowles  of  the 
British  navy,  then  in  Boston,  whose  name 
was  subsequently  bestowed  on  the  settle- 
ment as  Charlestown. 

Number  4,  as  the  outermost  post  with 
no  settlement  within  40  miles  of  it,  again 
bore  the  brunt  of  war  through  the  troub- 
led period  of  1754  to  1760  and  suffered 
many  hardships.  It  received  the  first 
sharp  shock  of  the  outbreak  when  in 
August,  1754,  a  band  of  Indians  burst 
into  the  house  of  Capt  James  Johnson, 
seized  the  seven  inmates  and  hurried 
them  all  off  to  Canada,  The  story  of  the 
adventures  and  sufferings  of  these  cap- 
tives as  told  in  Mrs  Johnson's  narrative 
is  familiar  to  many  of  us. 

In  1755  the  Indians  came  swooping 
down  the  valley  again.  About  midsum- 
mer news  came  that  500  Indians  were 
collecting  in  Canada  to  exterminate  the 
whole  white  population  on  the  river. 
The  settlers  were  attacked  at  different 
times  at  vv  alpole,  Bellows  Falls  and  twice 

at  Hinsdale.  While  the  assault  at  Wal- 
pole  was  the  last  by  the  Indians  in  force, 
roaming  bands  continued  to  infest  the 
frontier  river  towns  till  the  close  of  the 
war.  In  the  spring  of  1757  a  band  of 
French  and  Indians  came  again  upon 
Charlestown,  and  attacking  the  settlers 
carried  five  to  Canada  and  there  sold 
them  into  slavery  as  usual ;  only  two  sur- 
vived their  captivity.  After  the  spring  of 
1757  Number  4  was  undei  the  jurisdic- 
tion of  the  king's  officers.  The  fort  was 
the  rendezvous  of  various  colonial  regi- 
ments and  a  headquarters  of  rangers.  In 
1755  France  was  in  possession  of  Canada 
ana  the  shores  of  Lake  Champlain,  with 
Fort  Carrillon  at  Ticonderoga,  Fort  Fred- 
erick at  Crown  Point,  were  also  garri- 
soned by  200  French  regulars,  700  Cana- 
dians and  600  Indians.  The  French 
also  had  settlements  in  Louisiana.  The 
English  occupied  the  country  south  of 
Canada  and  west  to  the  Ohio  river.  Bos- 
ton was  headquarters  and  seat  of  provin- 
cial government  for  the  Massachusetts 

England  and  France,  aside  from  Euro- 
pean complications,  had  cause  enough 
for  war  on  this  continent,  France  having 
colonized  Canada  and  Louisiana  while 
England  had  established  colonies  in  be- 
tween which  separated  the  French  settle- 
ments. To  connect  the  latter,  and  to 
exclude  England  from  the  great  fur  trade 
of  the  interior,  France  began  to  erect  a 
series  of  military  posts  from  the  Niagara 
river  to  the  mouth  of  the  Mississippi. 
This  action  was  naturally  resented  by  the 
English  and  her  American  colonists  and 
in  1755  the  conflict  began  by  an  attack  on 
the  French  forts  in  the  Ohio  valley. 
George  Washington  himself  fired  the  first 
hostile  shot  in  this  the'  French  and  In- 
dian war,  at  a  place  about  forty  miles 
from  where  the  city  of  Pittsburg,  Pa., 
now  stands,  and  the  fight  was  on  between 
the  French  and  English  to  see  which 
should  have  supremacy  on  this  continent. 
The  French  enlisted  some  of  the  Indian 
tribes  as  allies  through  the  influence  of 
the  Jesuit  priests  and  practised  many 
barbarities.  Thev  gave  the  Indians  a 
bounty  on  the  captives  they  brought  in 

alive,  and  then  sold  them  as  slaves  to  the 
French  residents  of  Montreal  and  vicin- 
ity. In  some  cases  the  captives  were 
held  for  ransom  and  some  times  when 
the  price  came  it  was  held  and  the  pris- 
oners not  liberated.  The  war  had  been 
continued  from  1755  to  '58,  the  campaign 
of  the  latter  year  had  been  very  success-' 
ful  for  the  English,  and  their  power  was 
steadily  waxing  as  that  of  the  French 
waned.  Several  leading  tribes  of  Indians 
joined  the  six  nations  in  treaties  of  neu- 
trality with  the  English.  Gen.  Jeffrey 
Amherst,  a  brilliant  and  effective  officer, 
had  succeeded  to  the  command  of  the 
English  forces,  displacing  the  incompe- 
tent Lord  Loudon.  In  the  early  summer 
of  1759  three  great  campaigns  were  ar- 
ranged by  the  English,  by  one  of  which 
Gen.  Amherst  was  to  proceed  against 
Ticonderoga  and  Crown  Point  and  invade 
Canada  by  the  northern  route.  He  ac- 
cordingly advanced  against  Ticonderoga, 
when  the  French  destroyed  the  fort  and 
retreated  to  Fort  Frederick  at  Crown 
Point.  Amherst  followed  and  the  French 
fled  to  an  island  in  the  northern  part  of 
Lake  Champlain.  Thus  the  whole  coun- 
try around  Lake  Champlain  fell  into  the 
hands  ot  the  English. 

This  brings  us  to  the  time  of  building 
the  road.  Gen  Amherst  wanted  men  and 
supplies  for  his  advance  upon  Montreal. 
Number  4  was  the  rendezvous  for  troops 
enlisted  in  Massachusetts  and  New 
Hampshire  and  the  road  was  necessary. 
The  then  unoccupied  territory  north  of 
the  Massachusetts  line  and  between  the 
Connecticut  and  Hudson  rivers  was  con- 
stantly crossed  and  re-crossed  by  armed 
parties  of  whites  and  marauding  Indians. 
A  vast  unguarded  frontier,  unsafe  and 
liable  at  any  time  to  be  overrun  by  savage 
foes,  for  which  reason  what  is  now  Ver- 
mont was  not  sooner  settled  and  occupied 
by  the  whites. 

In  January,  1727  or  '8,  the  general 
court  of  Boston  authorized  an  exploration 
of  the  country  between  the  northern 
frontiers  and  Canada.  One  party  was  to 
discover  that  part  lying  between  the  Con- 
necticut river  and  Lake  Champlain. 
Later  traders  had  explored  the  old  Indian 

trail  by  way  of  what  is  now  Springfield, 
Weather&field.  Cavendish,  Ludlow  and 
Plymouth,  across  the  mountains  thence 
by  Otter  Creek  to  Lake  Champlain.  This 
was  the  route  usually  taken  by  Indians 
coming  down  to  the  Truck  House  at 
Fort  Dummer.    *  * 

Tho  diary  of  a  journey  made  in  1730 
by  a  trader,  James  Cross  of  Deerfield, 
describing  the  course  of  the  trail  and 
the  country  about  it  was  laid  before 
the  government.  Mr.  Cross'  journal 
reads  as  follows : 

"Monday  Ye  27th  April  1730  at  about 
12  of  Ye  clocke  we  left  Fort  Dummer 
and  travailed  that  day  three  miles  and 
laid  down  that  night  by  West  River 
which  is  distant  3  miles  from  Fort 
Dummer.  JNotabene,  I  travailed  with 
12  Canada  Mohawks  that  drank  to 
great  excess  at  Ye  fort  and  killed  a 
Skatacook  Indian  in  their  drunken 
condition  that  came  to  smoke  with 

Tuesday.  We  travailed  upon  the 
great  river  (Connecticut)  about  ten 
miles  We  kept  Ye  same  course  upon 
Ye  Great  River,  traveled  about  10  miles 
and  eat  a  drowned  Buck  that  night. 

We  travailed  upon  Ye  great  River 
within  2  miles  of  Ye  Great  Falls  (Bel- 
lows Falls)  in  said  River  then  went 
upon  land  to  Ye  Black  River  above 
Great  Falls.  Went  up  that  river  and 
lodged  about  a  mile  and  a  half  from 
the  mouth  of  Black  River  which  days 
travel  we  judged  was  about  10  miles. 

Friday.  We  cross  Black  River  at 
Falls  (now  Springfield  Village)  after-, 
wards  through  Ye  woods  Nor  North- 
west. Then  cross  BlaGk  River  again 
about  17  miles  above  our  first  crossirg. 
Afterwards  travel  Ye  same  course  and 
pitched  our  tents  on  Ye  homeward  side 
of  Black  River 

Saturday.  We  crossed  Black  R;ver 
left  a  great  mountain  on  ye  right  hand 
and  another  on  Ye  left  (Ludlow  ).  Keep 
a  N.  W.  Course  till  we  pitch  our  tent 
after  11  miles  travail  by  a  brook  which 
we  called  a  branch  of  Black  River. 

Sabbath  Day.  We  travailed  to  Black 
River  at  Ye  3  islands  between  which 
and  a  large  pond  we  past  Ye  Black 
River  and  enter  a  mountain  (in  Ply- 
mouth) that  afforded  us  a  prospect  of 
Ye  place  of  Fort  Dummer.  Soon  after 
we  enter  a  descending  country  and 
travail  till  we  reach  Arther  Creek  (Ot- 


ter  Creek)  in  a  descending:  land.  In 
this  days  travail  which  is  21  miles  we 
came  upon  7  brooks  which  ran  a  S.  W. 
Course  at  Ye  north  end  of  said  moun- 
tain ;  from  Black  River  to  Arther  Creek 
we  judged  is  25  miles. 

Monday.    Made  Canoes. 

Tuesday.  Hindered  travailing  by 
rain.  We  go  in  our  canoes  upon  Arther 
Creek  till  we  meet  2  great  falls  (prob- 
ably Centre  Rutland  and  Proctor)  said 
river  is  very  black  and  deep  and  sur- 
rounded with  good  land  to  Ye  extrem- 
ity of  our  prospect.  This  days  travail 
35  miles. 

Thursday.  We  sail  40  miles  on  Ar- 
ther Creek.  We  meet  with  great  falls 
(Middlebury)  and  a  little  above  them 
we  meet  two  other  pretty  large  falls 
(at  Weybridge)  and  about  10  miles  we 
meet  other  large  falls  (probably  Ver- 
gennes).  We  carried  our  canoe  by 
these  falls  and  came  to  Ye  lake." 

The  following  resolution  was  passed 
by  the  house  of  representatives  of  Mas- 
sachusetts on  the  10th  day  of  March, 
1756:  "Whereas,  it  is  of  great  import- 
ance that  a  thorough  knowledge  be 
had  of  the  distance  and  practicability 
of  a  communication  between  Number 
4,  on  the  Connecticut  River,  and 
Crown  Point,  and  that  the  course  down 
the  Otter  Creek  to  Lake  Champlain 
should  be  known,  therefore;  Voted, 
that  his  Excellency,  the  Governor,  be 
and  he  is  hereby  desired,  a9  soon  as 
maybe,  to  appoint  fourteen  men  upon 
this  service;  seven  of  them  to  go  from 
said  Number  Four,  direct  course,  to 
Crown  Point  to  measure  the  distance 
and  gain  what  knowledge  they  can  of 
the  country,  and  the  other  seven  to  go 
from  Number  Four  to  Otter  Creek, 
aforesaid,  and  down  said  Creek  to 
Lake  Champlain,  observing  the  true 
course  of  said  Creek,  its  depth  of  wa- 
ter, what  falls  there  are  in  it  and 
also  the  nature  of  the  soil  on  each  side 
thereof  and  what  growth  of  wood  are 
near  it.  Each  party  of  said  men  to 
keep  a  journal  of  their  proceedings 
and  observations  and  lay  thp  same,  on 
their  return,  before  this  court.  They 
to  observe  all  such  directions  as  they 
may  receive  from  his  excellency. 

"One  man  in  each  party  is  to  be  a 
skillful  surveyor  and  the  persons  em- 
ployed shall  have  a  reasonable  allow- 
ance made  them  by  the  court  for  their 
services. " 

Col.  Israel  Williams  of  Hatfield  was 
particularly  charged  with  this  duty. 
It  was  also  proposed  to  build  a  strong 
fort  on  the  height  of  land  between 
Black  River  and  Otter  Creek.  A  mili- 
tary post  was  there  deemed  important 
as  it  would  furnish  an  opportunity  to 
prevent  the  advance  of  the  enemy  from 
Lake  Champlain,  facilitate  operations 
against  Ticonderoga  and  Crown  Point 
and  afford  a  safe  retreat  for  scouting 
parties  from  the  Connecticut  river. 

In  the  following  summer  Lord  Loudon 
took  similar  steps  for  a  military  road 
from  the  Connecticut,  and  obtained  from 
Col  Williams  a  topographical  sketch  of 
the  country  and  reports  from  the  scouting 
officers,  but  nothing  further  was  done  at 
this  time,  owing  to  the  number  of  hostile 
Indians  infesting  the  region,  and  no  fur- 
ther attempt  was  then  made  to  build 
either  the  fort  or  the  road. 

In  the  spring  of  1759,  Capt  John  Stark, 
having  enlisted  a  new  company,  returned 
to  Fort  Edward  and  was  present  under 
Gen  Amherst  at  the  reduction  of  Fort 
Ticonderoga  and  Grown  Point.  Alter 
the  surrender  of  Fort  Frederick  he  was 
ordered  by  the  general  with  a  force  of 
200  rangers  to  construct  a  road  through 
the  Wilderness  from  Crown  Point  to 
Number  4  on  the  Connecticut.  A  good 
wagon  road  was  built  from  Crown  Point 
to  Otter  Creek  ;  Col  Hawks  cut  a  bridle 
path  thence  over  the  mountains,  but  for 
some  reason  did  not  complete  the  work. 

The  road  commenced  at  Chimney 
Point,  a  short  distance  from  Crown  Point, 
in  what  is  now  the  town  of  Addison.  It 
passed  through  Bridport  on  the  south, 
crossing  the  present  road  slightly  north 
of  the  D.  L.  Kellogg  dwelling-house, 
thence  through  a  pasture,  where  it  struck 
the  north  line  of  the  town  of  Shoreham. 
thence  across  the  present  highway  from 
Shoreham  village  to  Bridport.  Running 
to  the  southeast  it  crossed  the  Lemon 
fair,  thence  over  the  hill,  past  a  spring, 
where  evidently  parties  of  Indians  had 
camped  and  also  troops,  in  the  French 
and  Indian  and  revolutionary  wars,  as 
arrow  heads,  pipes,  gun  Mints,  knives, 
earthern  ware,  and  parts  of  solaiers' arms 
were  formerly  found  there.    The  road 

ran  thence,  through  Whiting,  to  Sud- 
bury, by  the  Sawyer  tavern,  to  Otter 
Creek,  crossing  that  stream  a  short  dis- 
tance below  Miller's  bridge,  thence 
through  the  western  part  of  Brandon,  to 
Breese's  Mills.  It  thence  followed  nearly 
the  present  highway  west  of  the  Otter 
Creek  in  Pittsford  to  what  is  now  Fowler, 
a  postoffice  in  the  westerly  part  of  Pitts- 
ford.  Taking  an  easterly  course  the 
road  passed  about  three  rods  west  of  the 
Fowler  dwelling-house,  formerly  the  Benj. 
Stevens  house,  to  a  ford  on  the  Otter 
Creek  known  as  ''Pitt's"  ford,  so  named 
in  honor  of  Wm.  Pitt,  the  English  states- 
man, the  town  of  Pittsford  taking  its 
name  fiom  this  ford.  After  crossing  the 
ford  it  turned  southeasterly,  striking  the 
terrace  on  which  the  village  of  Pittsford 
now  stands,  passing  a  little  west  of  the 
village,  thence  southerly  to  the  road 
leading  from  what  is  known  as  Corn  hill 
to  Proctor,  from  thence  passing  between 
the  present  highways  leading  from  Pitts- 
ford to  Rutland  to  the  old  Maj  Cheney 
tavern  near  the  Pittsford  and  Rutland 
line,  following  somewhere  near  the  pres- 
ent north  highway  to  Main  street.  Rut- 
land, to  the  Rutland  fort,  the  remains  of 
which  are  visible.  Passing  south  to 
Clarendon  it  followed  the  course  of  the 
present  highway  for  some  distance, 
thence  east  to  Shrewsbury  Centre,  from 
there  passing  through  Mt.  Holly  and 
Plymouth,  perhaps  a  corner  of  Ludlow, 
to  the  Twenty-Mile  camp.  An  older 
branch  of  this  road  and  the  only  one 
travelled  prior  to  1759  (probably  an  old 
Indian  trail)  passed  through  Centre  Rut- 
land northerly  to  what  is  now  Proctor, 
following  nearly  the  west  Proctor  road 
and  the  present  road  in  Pittsford  west  of 
the  Otter  Creek,  crossing  the  Hubbard- 
ton  road,  from  Pittsford  railroad  station 
about  a  mile  west  of  the  present  West 
Creek  road,  continuing  northerly  to 
Breese's  mills,  thence  to  Crown  Point. 
There  is  a  monument  marking  the  spring 
mentioned  in  Shoreham  near  where  the 
road  passed.  The  fort  in  Rutland  was 
where  the  two  roads  united. 

Here  are  some  extracts  from  journal 
kept  by  N.  Payson,  orderly  sergeant  of 

Capt  John  Brooks'  company  of  rangers, 
Col.  Timo.  Ruggles'  regiment,  which 
refer  to  the  commencement  of  the 

Camp  Half  Way  Brook,  July  4,  1759: 

After  orders  Provo.  Shrewsbury, 
Maj.  Hawks,  field  officer  of  the  day, 
a  sergt.  and  12  men  from  Ye  lines  to 
cut  and  burn  all  Ye  leaves  and  brush 
that  air  within  lines  of  sentries.  No 
man  is  to  fell  any  trees  within  the 
lines  of  sentries.  A  working  party  is 
to  be  paraded  immediately,  consisting 
of  one  Captain,  2  subs.,  3  Sergts. ,  50 
privates  without  arms.  All  guards  to 
be  mounted  as  usual,  as  their  seems  to 
be  some  neglect  of  exercise,  it  is  ex- 
pected for  the  future  it  will  be  more 

It  is  very  notoriously  true  that  pro- 
fane cursing  and  swearing  prevails  in 
the  camp,  it  is  very  far  from  the  Chris- 
tian Soldiers  duty,  it  is  not  only  very 
displeasing  to  God  of  Armies  but  dis- 
honorable before  men.  It  is  therefore 
required  and  will  be  expected  that  for 
the  future  the  odious  sounds  of  curs- 
ing and  swearing  is  to  be  turned  into 
profound  silence. 
July  5,  1759: 

Regimental  Order,  parole  doubling 
all  the  guards,  to  be  mounted  as  usual. 
All  axes  and  spades  this  day  to  be  un- 
packed, having  the  number  exactly 
right,  that  was  left  for  the  use  of  the 
camp  is  wanted,  that  they  may  have 
them  applied  to  the  Quartermaster. 
Whoever  is  found  to  secure  none,  and 
it  be  known,  will  be  looked  upon  as 
an  embezzler  of  the  King's  stores  and 
must  answer  accordingly.  Lieut.  Col. 
Ingleson,  field  officer  for  the  day.  He 
is  to  see  the  pickets  paraded  and  give 
them  orders  in  going  the  rounds,  as 
for  some  nights  it  has  been  neglected, 
all  former  orders  to  be  obeyed. 
Camp  Crown  Point,  Oct.  26,  1759: 

Thi3  day  we  set  out  to  clear  a  road  to 
Number   4,    we  crossed   the  Jake  at 
about  sunset  and  then  camped. 
Saturday,  27th  : 

Major  John  Hawks  arrived   this  day 
and  we  set  out  to  clear  the  road  and 
cleared  as  far  as  the  two-mile  brook 
and  camped. 
Sabbath  Day,  28th  : 

This  day  cleared  four  miles  and  then 
Monday,  29th  : 

This  day  we  marched  2  miles  and 

then  came  and  made  a  bridge  over, 
then  march  2  miles  further  and  came 
to  a  large  stream  and  camped. 
Tuesday,  Oct.  30: 

We  made  a  great  bridge,  marched 
three  miles  and  camped. 
Oct  31: 

Marched  two  miles  and  then  din- 

Herald  Letter. 

The  following  description  of  this 
road,  written  by  one  whose  father  had 
traveled  it,  appeared  in  the  Rutland 
Herald  January  16,  1861: 

"  I  have  thought  it  might  interest  some 
of  your  readers  to  see  some  account  of  the 
old  French  track  or  road  from  old  Crown 
Point  fort  to  No.  4,  (now  Charlestown, 
N.  H.,)  previous  to  the  peace  bttween 
England  and  France  in  1763.  My  atten- 
tion was  called  to  this  subject  by  Mr. 
Hager,  the  state  geologist,  calling  on  me 
to  inform  him  where  it  was.  I  said  to 
him  I  had  a  general  knowledge  of  the 
route,  but  could  not  answer  the  direct 
question.  He  then  said  he  must  give  up 
the  finding  it  on  the  west  side  of  the 
mountain ;  he  could  trace  the  road  to 
Mount  Hollv  and  no  further  He  then 
told  the  object  of  the  inquiry,  which  was 
that  a  new  state  map  was  in  progress  and 
he  wanted  to  have  the  track  of  the  old 
French  road  appear  on  it  across  the  state 
from  the  two  points  named.  And  it  ex- 
cited my  mind  at  once,  for  the  following 
reason  :  My  father.  Elias  Hall,  then  of 
New  Cheshire,  New  Haven  county,  Con- 
necticut, enlisted  into  the  army  of  Lord 
Amherst  at  Hartford,  and  the  colonel's 
name  was  Whiting.  He  was  at  Crown 
Point  and  acted  as  Sergeant  and  was  on 
fatigue  duty  some  of  the  time  in  digging 
the  big  well  in  the  northeast  angle  of  the 
fort.  *  *  *  When  I  was  nineteen 
years  old,  I  went  to  look  over  my  father's 
ancient  scenes.      *      *  * 

Crown  Point  Fort  and  Chimney  Point 
being  only  half  a  mile  apart,  the  old 
French  road  started  at  the  latter  point  to 
cross  what  is  now  Vermont  and  across  the 
mountain.  My  father,  late  in  the  fall  of 
1759.  was  taken  with  rheumatism,  and 
had  permission  f:om  Lord  Amherst  to 
return  home  and  went  in  the  old  French 

road,  before  there  was  a  family  in  this 
section  of  the  country  except  what  I  have 
named  ;  and  ne  is  the  only  individual  I 
ever  knew  that  walked  it. 

The  first  night  on  his  way  he  stopped 
at  Camp  Cold  Spring,  near  the  eastern 
part  of  the  town  of  Shoreham,  and  six 
miles  west  of  Whiting  depot,  and  ten 
miles  southwest  ot  Middlebury.  I  have 
forwarded  to  Mr.  Bissell,  who  owns  the 
farm  where  the  spring  is,  a  monument,  to 
be  placed  there  to  mark  cne  spot  on  the 
old  French  road  and  to  designate  the 
spot  where  my  deceased  parent  rested 
his  weary  limbs  in  the  wilderness,  one 
hundred  and  eleven  years  since  :  and 
have  suggested  two  other  places  to 
mark  the  road,  of  some  importance  to 
history,  from  Lake  Champlain  to  Con- 
necticut river.  I  understand  that  Mr 
Hager,  the  assistant  state  geologist, 
followed  the  information  I  communi- 
cated to  him  soon  after  his  application, 
and  it  appears  on  the  new  map  as 
desired.  There  is  no  doubt  that  Pitts- 
ford  Stockade  fort  was  on  the  track  ; 
it  then  went  south  three  or  four  miles, 
turned  southwesterly  from  the  place 
where  old  Capt  J.  Fassett  lived  and  by 
where  E.  Drury,  J.  Warner  and  A.Ladd 
lived,  in  Pittsford;  in  Rutland  by  where 
Joe  Keeler  lived  more  than  twenty 
years  since,  by  Seth  Keeler's  to  the  old 
Maj.  Cheney  place,  and  then  south  to 
Rutland  union  store,  near  which  are 
the  marks  of  the  Rutland  fort :  then  it 
went  south  over  four  miles,  turning 
easterly  passed  the  Bowman  place  and 
to  the  north  of  Crary's  mills,  then  east 
to  the  road  going  to  Shrewsbury  centre 
to  where  Mr  White  lived  eighty  years 
since,  from  there  to  the  twenty  mile 
camp  three  miles  from  the  old  Dutton 
tavern  stand,  and  thence  to  Number  L 
The  brave  and  celebrated  Maj  >r  Rogers, 
after  incredible  sufferings  and  hard- 
ships, with  what  men  were  not  starved 
on  his  return,  after  the  destruction  of 
the  St.  Francis  Indians  returned  on 
this  road  to  Cro vn  Point  in  L759,  a. 
hazardous  expedition." 

The  eastern  end  of  the  road,  between 
Number  4  and  the  mountaii  .  h  18  built 
the  following  summer,  17Gll  (one  hun- 
dred and  forty-nine,  years  »g«»)  The 
work  was  done  by  Col  John  Roffe  and 
his  renewed  regiment  of  eight  hundred 
New    Hampshire  men.    Tbey  hail  first 

opened  a  road  from  the  Merrimac  to- 
wards the  Connecticut,  clearing  a  mere 
bridle  path,  as  far  as  Keene,  New 
Hampshire.  They  arrived  at  Number 
4  in  June.  Crossing  the  river,  they 
first  built  a  block  house,  close  by  the 
ferry  landing,  and  enclosed  it  in  pal- 
isades, as  a  protection  in  case  of 
trouble.  They  were  44  or  45  days  in 
cutting  the  road  to  the  mountains 
where  it  hit  the  bridle  path  cut  by  Col 
Hawks  the  year  previous.  At  every 
mile  they  set  up  a  post  and  26  of  these 
posts  had  been  placed  when  the  moun- 
tain was  reached.  Their  baggage  was 
carried  on  ox-teams  as  far  as  the 
mountains,  then  pack  horses  were  used. 
Such  was  the  speed  with  which  the 
work  was  dispatched  that  Col  Goffe's 
^regiment  was  able  to  participate  in  the 
final  expedition  against  Montreal,  in 
-September,  1760. 

While  on  this  work  an  epidemic 
Iforoke  out  among  the  soldiers  employed 
mnd  several  died.  Their  bodies  were 
buried  at  a  spot  east  of  the  line  of  the 
road,  not  far  from  the  C.  Horace  Hub- 
bard place  in  Springfield.  The  block 
house  at  the  river,  the  land  adjoining 
and  two  of  tho  king's  boats,  used  as  a 
ferry,  were  given  by  Gen  Amherst  to 
Luxford  Goodwin  in  payment  for  his 
carrying  a  packet  from  him  to  Gen 
Murray  at  Quebec.  All  but  a  small 
part  of  the  road  through  Springfield  , 
was  discontinued  as  early  as  1826. 

The  road  was  built  from  a  point  on 
iihe  river,  not  far  from  where  the  Che- 
shire bridge  is  now  located,  just  skirt- 
ing the  southern  point  of  Skitchewaug 
'mountain;  running  north  by  west 
through  Springfield  it  crossed  the 
Weathersfield  line  at  about  the  centre, 
and  passing  just  east  of  the  Plains 
cemetery  to  near  Amsden ,  thence  up 
the  valley  past  the  Streeter  place,  to- 
wards Greenbush,  where  it  took  a  more 
westerly  course  up  the  hill,  coming 
out  near  the  Atherton  place,  past  the 
Joseph  H.  Adams  place,  thence  north 
of  Albert  Eaton's  dwelling  to  the  Mor- 
gan bridge,  thence  northwesterly  past 
the  Jacob  S.  Parker  place  and  near  the 
Heald  place,  from  thence  it  passed 
found  Mt.  Gilead  and  to  this  spot  on 
the  southwest  side  of  Gilead.  Its 
course  took  it  through  considerable 
soft,  swampy  ground,  which  was  cord- 
uroyed. In  some  places  tbe  remains  of 
this  work  can  be  seen  today,  also  where 

a  brook  was  bridged,  and  there  is  said 
to  be  a  cellar  hole  where  Capt  Coffin 
built  his  first  house  on  this  road  in 
1769.  The  later  road  passed  the  Chas. 
S.  Parker  place,  where  Capt  Coffin 
built  his  tavern.  A'surveyor's  map  of 
the  town  of  Cavendish  of  1790  shows 
the  road  as  going  from  the  Coffin  tav- 
ern directly  over  the  hill  westerly.  It 
intersected  the  other  road  on  the  hill 
east  of  here,  perhaps  one-third  mile 
from  this  camp  ground.  In  all  proba- 
bility the  first  road  was  discontinued 
on  account  of  its  being  30  wet  and  soft 
in  places.  From  here  the  road  passed 
westerly  near  this  house  (Willis 
Spaulding's) ,  up  the  hill  (where  traces 
of  it  cau  be  seen),  probably  through  a 
corner  of  the  town  of  Ludlow,  coming 
out  at  Plymouth  Kingdom;  thence 
down  the  hill  through  what  was  later 
known  as  the  ''society  lands"  to  the 
ponds.  Skirting  the  banks,  from  the 
Amos  Pollard  farm  northerly  to  the 
head  of  the  upper  pond,  it  crossed  the 
river  and  went  south  of  Saltash  moun- 
tain into  Shrewsbury  Capt  Coffin's 
tavern  was  doing  business  as  late  as 
18 10,  as  in  an  almanac  published  in 
Boston  that  year  there  was  given  a 
table  of  distances  with  all  the  taverns 
from  Boston  to  Crown  Point.  There 
were  then  two  in  this  town  on  the  mil- 
itary road — Capt  Coffin's  place  and 
Paines,  six  miles  east,  probably  the 
place  where  Joseph  S.  Atherton  now 
lives,  as  that  scales  about  six  miles  as 
the  road  went.  The  survey  heretofore 
mentioned  also  notes  a  mill  near  Mor- 
gan bridge  on  the  road. 

Without  doubt,  after  the  original 
road  was  built,  deflections  were  made 
to  suit  the  different  settlers  who  were 
not  on  the  line  and  had  established 
homes  in  the  vicinity. 

Cavendish  was  first  chartered  Oct. 
12,  1761,  by  Gov.  Wentworth,  and  later, 
from  the  Province  of  New  York  June 
16, 1772,  to  Amos  Kimball  and  associates. 

The  first  actual  settlement  in  Caven- 
disn  was  made  in  June  1769,  when  Capt. 
John  Coffin  located  and  built  a  dwelling 
and  later  built  a  tavern  on  land  now 
owned  and  occupiec  by  Charles  S.  Par- 
ker. His  hospitable  home  during  the 
revolution  afforded  thousands  of  Amer- 
ican soldiers  shelter  and  refreshment 
while  passing  from  Number  4  to  the 
military  posts  on  Lake  Champlain. — 
Capt.  Coffin  was  prominent  in  affairs, 

representing  the  town  in  the  legislature 
in  the  years  1778,  1781,  1785,  1786.  He 
was  also  odo  of  the  selectmen  in  1782 
and  held  other  town  offices.  The  first 
settlers  were  mostly  from  Massachusetts 
and  in  1771  Noadiah  Russell  andThomas 
Gilbert  joined  Capt  Coffin,  sharing  in 
the  hardships  and  privations,  attendant 
on  frontier  life,  the  grinding  of  a  grist 
of  corn  involving  a  journey  of  sixty 
miles  in  those  days.  Noadiah  Russell 
settled  on  the  spot  where  J.  H.  Adams's 
house  now  stands.  Mr  Gilbert  settled 
on  the  Taylor  farm  on  the  road  to 

While  there  may  be  some  question  as 
to  the  original  location  of  the  road  at 
some  points,  there  is  no  doubt  whatever 
as  to  the  location  of  this  camp  ground 
used  by  the  soldiers  from  1760  on,  first 
by  the  English  army  and  later  by  the 
army  of  the  Revolution,  as  authenti- 
cated by  Capt  James  Hall  who  passed 
on  several  years  since,  an  aged  man  who 
passed  his  youth  in  this  vicinity  and 
had  seen  the  remains  of  the  old  build- 
ings in  his  boyhood  and  pointed  out 
the  spot  to  his  descendants  and  others. 
This  camp  ground  being  about  twenty 
miles  from  Number  4,  was  known  as  the 
Twenty  Mile  encampment  and  gave  the 
namH  to  this  brook  as  "  Twenty  Mile 
■Stream,"  by  which  name  it  has  all 
through  the  past  years  been  designated. 

Many  provincial  leaders  who  took  part 
in  the  French  and  English  war  on  the 
English  side  afterwards  became  famous 
in  the  war  of  the  Revolution  on  the 
American  side,  notably, Gens  Washing- 
ton, Israel  Putnam,  Stark  and  Hawks* 
Benj  Franklin  was  also  major  of  militia 
under  the  king,  but  found  military 
life  not  to  his  taste  and  resigned. 

As  to  Number  4.  First— As  early  as 
1703  there  was  a  white  settlement  or 
colony  at  Deerfield,  protected  by  a 

Second— About  1714  a  fort  was  built 
at  Vernon,  known  as  Bridgman  and 
Startwell's  fort,  destroyed  by  Indians 

Third— Fort  Dummer  at  Brattleboro 
was  built  in  1721  and  in  1713  Number 
4  was  built,  being  the  fourth  on  the 
Connecticut  river. 

The  chairman,  in  paving"  the  way 
for  the  next  address,  went  on  to  say: 
"I  am  sure  we  are  all  under  great 

obligations  to  Mr.  Burbank  for  hav- 
ing- given  us  such  a  complete  account 
of  this  British  military  road,  and  I 
hope  that  a  permanent  record  may 
be  made  of  it.  The  results  following 
the  building-  of  this  road  must  have 
been  in  a  crude  way  similar  to  those 
following-  the  building-  of  a  railroad 
throug-h  an  undeveloped  country,  in 
that  it  opened  the  way  for  new  set- 
tlers. It  is  evident  that  the  first 
settler  in  town,  Capt.  John  Coffein, 
located  at  that  particular  point  by 
reason  of  reaching-  that  point  over 
this  road,  as  did  also  James  Smith 
who  located  here,  and  many  of  the 
other  early  settlers.  While  this 
road  was  no  doubt  admirably  adapt- 
ed to  the  purpose  for  which  it  was 
built,  yet  as  it  unfortunately  cut 
across  the  state  from  southeast  to 
northwest  and  across  the  hills  and 
valleys  instead  of  parallel  with  them, 
it  could  not  long  satisfy  the  require- 
ments of  the  settlers  when  the  conn- 
try  was  .developed,  and  this  section 
of  the  road  was  soon  abandoned. 

"Many  people  have  expressed  sur- 
prise at  the  judgment  of  the  early 
settlers  in  locating  apparently  at 
the  most  inaccessible  places  —  on 
the  very  tops,  almost,  of  these  hills, 
when  the  land  was  so  much  better 
in  the  valleys.  The  hills  to  the  easl 
of  us  were  lined  with  homes  and  tin- 
Bond  place,  or  as  it  was  later  known, 
the  Weeks  place,  is  the  only  one  now- 
occupied.  New  settlers,  as  a  rule, 
locate  on  the  hills  or  slopes  in  pref- 
erence to  the  valleys,  for  various 
reasons.  The  land  is  more  easily 
cleared,  the  stumps  removed,  etc., 
and  the  location  much  more  health- 
ful than  in  the  valleys.  These  early 
settlers,  having  no  available  mar- 
kets and  having  to  travel  in  some 
cases  ()0  miles  in  going  to  mill  with 
corn,  were  interested  primarily  in 
raising  from  the  soil  merely  enough 
to  supply  their  personal  wants  tot 
food  and  clothing,  so  that  a  health- 
ful and  convenient  location  where 
the  land   was  easily  cleared  was 

more  to  be  desired  than  the  condi- 
tion of  the  soil. 

"I  have  always  understood  that 
the  land  owned  by  my  grandfather, 
James  Smith,  Jr-,  was  given  to  Su- 
sannah Coffein,  wife  of  Capt.  John 
Coffein,  as  she  was  the  only  woman 
who  resided  in  Cavendish  through- 
out the  entire  period  of  the  Revolu- 
tionary war,  and  at  whose  home 
thousands  of  Revolutionary  soldiers 
received  refreshment  while  on  their 
march  to  Ticonderoga  from  Charles- 
town,  N.  H.  She  lived  to  be  94  years 
old  and  died  in  1824.  She  is  said  to 
have  been  a  very  plain  looking 
woman,  and  on  one  occasion  when 
this  rather  delicate  subject  was  re- 
ferred to  in  the  course  of  conversa- 
tion in  the  hearing  of  Capt.  John, 
he  is  said  to  have  spoken  up  with 
considerable  energy  and  said  that 
while  his  wife  might  not  be  noted 
for  her  beauty,  for  a  good  many 
years  she  was  the  handsomest 
woman  in  town!" 

Address  by  Gilbert  A.  Davis. 

•  Hon  Gilbert  A.  Davis  of  Windsor 
was  then  introduced,  and  said  :  "A 

placing  of  this  tablet,  mentioned 
that  it  was  to  be  placed  in  an  ob- 
scure corner  of  the  town  on  a  high- 
way little  traveled,  and  he  wondered 
why  it  should  attract  so  much  at- 
tention. The  idea  of  my  friend 
seemed  to  be  that  this  marking  of 
the  old  Crown  Point  road  and  the 
site  of  the  encampment  of  the  sol- 
diers who  built  it  and  incidentally 
the  log  house,  and  tavern  of  Capt 
Wm.  Coffein,  were  matters  of  rather 
slight  significance." 

Mr  Davis  took  issue  with  the 
friend  in  question,  maintaining  that 
the  proper  and  most  notable  object 
Qf  history  is  to  record  the  vicissi- 
tudes of  society,  its  spirit  in  differ- 
ent ages  and  the  causes  which  de- 
termine its  progress  or  decline.  He 
emphasized  the  fact  that  the  be- 
ginnings of  great  results  are  often 
very  humble,  and  cited  the  birth  of 
Christ,  the  coming  of  the  Pilgrims 
to  Plymouth,  and  the  numerous  in- 
ventions of  past  years,  to  prove  his 
point.    He  then  went  on  to  say  : 

I  learn  from  a  diary  kept  by  one 
James  Cross  that  in  April,  1730,  he 
and  his  associates  traveled  from 
Fort  Dummer  (in  Vermont)  to  Lake 

friend  in  writing  to  me  about  theCh  amplain  via  Bellows  Falls,  Spring - 

T W E  U TV    M I L E  EN C A M  P WENT 



OF  1 760  BY  COL*  JOHN  GOFF 

THI S  TA 6t E T  f « ECTE D  1 9 09  BY 

The  Tablet. 

field  Great  Falls— following  Black 
river  through  Ludlow  to  Plymouth 
and  then  over  the  mountain  to 
Otter  Creek  to  the  lake.  This  trip 
occupied  two  weeks. 

As  early  as  1725  there  was  a  well- 
defined  Indian  trail  or  road  from 
Lake  Champlain  to  Fort  Dummer 
which  followed  up  the  Otter  Creek 
to  its  source,  then  crossed  the 
Green  Mountains  and  struck  the 
headwaters  of  Black  river  and  fol- 
lowed that  river  down  to  the  Con- 
necticut and  down  the  Connecticut 
to  Fort  Dummer.  The  importance 
of  the  territory  now  occupied  in 
part  by  Cavendish  soon  became 
thoroughly  known  to  the  English 
nation  and  attracted  the  attention 
of  King  Geo.  Ill  and  his  august 

The  speaker  referred  to  hostilities 
between  England  and  France  and 
the  extent  to  which  New  England 
suffered  therefrom,  and  spoke  brief- 
ly of  the  well-known  incident  involv- 
ing the  capture  of  the  Johnson  fam- 
ily by  the  Indians.  He  also  spoke 
of  the  action  of  the  Massachusetts 
house  (already  touched  on  by  a  pre- 
vious speaker)  regarding  the  build- 
ing of  a  road.  Reference  was  made 
to  Gen  Amherst's  determination  to 
complete  the  subjugation  of  the 
French,  and  his  plans  for  approach- 
ing Montreal  by  three  different 
routes.  The  men  under  the  com- 
mand of  Col  John  Goffe,  having  met 
at  Charlestown,  were  commanded 
to  cut  a  road  across  the  present 
state  of  Vermont,  thus  opening  a 
direct  communication  by  land  be- 
tween Connecticut  river  and  Lake 
Champlain.  The  road  began  at 
Wentworth's  Ferry,  two  miles  above 
the  fort  at  Charlestown,  and  was 
laid  out  twenty-six  miles  in  the 
course  of  Black  river,  as  far  as  the 
present  town  of  Ludlow,  where  com- 
menced a  path  which  had  been 
made  the  year  before  by  Lieut-Col 
Hawks.  In  this  they  passed  over 
the  mountains    to    Otter  creek. 

thence  along  the  borders  of  that 
stream  in  a  good  road  previously 
constructed,  to  Crown  Point.  *  * 
While  the  New  Hampshire  regiment 
were  engaged  in  cutting  the  road, 
the  trails  of  Indians  were  occasion- 
ally seen  in  the  adjacent  woods,  but 
no  hostilities  followed.  The  last  in- 
cursion of  the  Indians  on  the  fron- 
tiers of  New  England  during  the  war 
was  at  Charlestown,  whence  the 
family  of  Joseph  Willard  were  taken 
and  carried  to  Montreal,  a  short 
time  previous  to  its  investment  by 
the  English.  No  less  personages 
than  John  Stark  and  Lieut-Col 
Hawks  worked  on  this  road  in  1759. 

The  building  of  this  Crown  Point 
road  through  Cavendish  was  a  mat- 
ter of  much  more  importance  than 
at  first  it  would  seem  to  have  been. 
Lake  Champlain  and  Lake  George 
had  been  regarded  as  of  the  utmost 
importance  in  holding  possession  of 
the  Western  continent.  It  was  for 
this  reason  that  millions  of  dollars 
had  been  spent  in  building  and  main- 
taining Fort  Ticonderoga,  Crown 
Point  on  Lake  Champlain  and  Fort 
William  Henry  on  Lake  George.  A 
block  house  was  built  in  1760  two 
miles  above  Charlestown,  X.  H..  on 
the  Vermont  side  in  Springfield. 
This  Crown  Point  road  kept  on  the 
high  lands  and  away  from  the 
swamps  and  wet  lands  of  the  val- 
leys and  made  substantially  a  bee 
line  to  this  point  on  the  Twenty- 
Mile  Stream. 

With  this  Crown  Point  road  for 
communication  and  transportation 
of  munitions  of  war  and  movements 
of  soldiers  and  the  control  of  the 
Hudson  river,  the  British  were  as- 
sured of  the  permanent  control  of 
this  continent.  The  results  proved 
the  wisdom  of  the  military  leaders, 
and  in  the  autumn  of  17<>(>  the 
French  in  Canada  were  overpowered 
and  English  supremacy  in  North 
America  was  established  from  the 
Atlantic  to  the  Mississippi  river  and 
from  the  frozen  North  to  the  r\vr 

glades  of  Florida.  You  will  now 
see  the  importance  of  this  road  as  a 
war  measure. 

Upon  the  establishment  of  peace, 
the  settlement  of  Vermont  began.  Gov 
Benning  Wentworth  claimed  that  the 
western  boundary  of  the  province  of 
New  Hampshire  was  a  line  20  miles 
east  of  the  Hudson  river  and  proceed- 
ed to  charter  townships  as  far  west  on 
that  line.  By  1764  he  had  chartered 
118  townships  and  had  given  14,000 
acres  to  his  favorites.  It  was  on  Oct. 
12,  1761,  that  Cavendish  was  charl  ered. 
Plymouth  under  the  name  of  Saltash, 
Keading  and  Windsor  were  all  granted 
on  July  6,  1761.  • 

The  settlement  of  this  part  of  Ver- 
mont,   including  Cavendish,  Ludlow, 
Reading    and     Plymouth,  progressed 
with  rapidity.     The  soldiers  who  were 
engaged   in   building    this  road  had 
learned  of  the  fertile  soil,  the  valuable 
timber,    the     beautiful    valleys  and 
abundant  chances  for  homes  and  for- 
tunes along  the  line  of  this  old  mili- 
tary road,  and  settlements  rapidly  were 
made.    They  brought  with   them  the 
Christian  church,  the  public  school, 
sterling  integrity,   the  New  England 
town   meeting,    the   love  of  liberty, 
hatred  of  king  craft,  independence  of 
thought,  and  love  for  self-government. 
It  was  of  this  class  of  men  that  the 
rank  and  file  of  the  army  of  the  Revo- 
lution was  made.     *     *     In  1783  the 
publication  of  two  newspapers  was  be- 
gun  in  Vermont.     The  Vermont  Ga- 
zette,  at  Bennington,    June  f>,  1783; 
The  Vermont  Journal  at  Windsor,  Aug. 
7,  1783.    Each  of  these  have  been  is- 
sued weekly  since  that  date.     It  is  a 
curious  fact  to   notice  that   in  1790 
Reading  had  747  inhabitants  ;  Plymouth 
(then.  Saltash)  had  106;  Cavendish 
491,  Ludlow  179,  and  the  whole  state 
of  Vermont  85,341. 

The  people  of  the  New  Hampshire 
"Grants,  as  Vermont  was  then  called, 
had  no  representation  in  the  conven- 
tion that  adopted  the  declaration  of 
Independence  on  July  4,  1776,  because 
this  territory  was  then  regarded  by 
outsiders  as  a  part  of  New  York.  But 
this  was  not  the  sentiment  among  the 
sturdy  settlers  of  Vermont.  As  you 
are  aware,  at  the  convention  held  a 
Westminster  Jan.  15,  1777,  Vermont 
Was   declared  to  be  an  independent 

state.  Cavendish  was  not  represented 
at  the  convention  which  sat  at  Wind- 
sor in  July,  1777,  and  adopted  the  con- 
stitution and  organized  the  free  and 
independent  state  of  Vermont,  but 
Andrew  Spear  sat  in  that  convention 
as  the  representative  of  Reading. 
However,  Cavendish  was  loyal  to  the 
new  republic  and  Capt.  James  Coffein 
was  the  representative  of  Cavendish 
in  1778. 

Do  you  sufficiently  recognize  the  im- 
portant part  that  this  old  road  bore  in 
establishing  the  supremacy  of  the  Eng- 
lish on  this  continent?  The  French 
had  discovered  and  settled  Canada. 
They  were  Catholics  and  under  the 
domination  of  the  Roman  Catholic 
church  and  were  the  hereditary  ene- 
mies of  the  English.  The  English 
were  Protestants  and  had  discovered 
and  settled  New  England  and  had  ac- 
quired supremacy  over  the  Dutch  in 
New  York  and  claimed  dominion  in- 
definitely to  the  west.  The  Spaniards 
claimed  the  Mississippi  river  and  to 
the  west  of  it.  The  Indian  tribes  had 
become  allies  to  the  French  and  were 
hostile  to  the  New  England  settlers. 
The  English  must  hold  New  England 
and  New  York  and  to  the  indefinite 
west,  or  all  was  lost. 

The  English  statesmen  and  English 
military  leaders  of  that  day  grasped 
the  situation,  and  this  military  road 
from  No.  4  to  Crown  Point  became  the 
key  to  the  situation,  and  it  was  built 
by  the  British  government.  It  was  no 
insignificant  event,  but  an  enterprise 
of  great  national  importance.  And  we 
do  well  to  honor  it  and  mark  its  loca- 
tion, as  has  been  done  from  the  Con- 
necticut river  along  its  lineup  into 
Weathersfield.  *  *  Unless  this  road 
had  been  built,  perhaps  George  Wash- 
ington, Gen.  Stark,  Ethan  Allen  and 
thousands  of  others  including  Sergt. 
James  Hall  and  Private  Samuel  Ames, 
whose  descendants  unveil  and  decorate 
this  tablet  today, — men  whom  we  just- 
ly regard  as  patriots  and  heroes,  would 
have  been  classed  as  rebels  and  trait- 
ors; the  declaration  of  American  inde- 
pendence would  have  been  regarded  as 
a  crime  and  a  blunder;  there  would 
have  beeu  no  free  and  independent 
state  of  Vermont.  No  national  ensign 
which  we  designate  as  "Old  Glory," 
with  its  13  stripes  and  46  stars  We 
should  not  be  here  today  to  honor  the 

soldiers  of  the  Revolution  who  settled 
in  this  neighborhood  and  whose  de- 
scendants have  conceived  and  carried 
out  the  noble  enterprise  of  placing  this 
marker,  and  whose  fair  daughters  un- 
veil it  i"o  the  view  of  not  only  the  in- 
habitants who  have  gathered  here  to- 
day, but  for  the  future  generations  of 
the  hardy  sons  and  daughters  of  Ver- 

This  tablet  will  strengthen  our  love 
for  Vermont,  with  its  heroic  history, 
its  beautiful  valleys  and  rugged  hills, 
its  hardy  sons  and  daughters,  its  in- 
vigorating climate  and  the  sturdy  char- 
acters of  its  inhabitants. 

The  Daughters  of  the  American  Rev- 
olution are  to  take  the  care  and  cus- 
tody of  this  marker.  It  is  for  such 
patriotic  duties  that  that  organization 
exists.  Its  mission  is  a  noble  one.  We 
can  not  too  highly  commend  them  for 
their  unselfish  labors.  Woman,  the 
last  at  the  cross  and  the  first  at  the 
sepulchre,  by  accepting  such  trusts 
has  ever  been  the  keeper  of  the  best 
interests  of  mankind.  Let  no  vandal 
hand  mar  this  tablet! 

Was  New  England  worth  saving  to 
the  English  ?  Was  Vermont  worth  sav- 
ing? Was  the  site  of  this  encampment 
and  the  towns  contiguous  thereto 
worth  saving? 

The  territory  within  a  dozen  miles 
having  the  point  of  the  radius  at  this 
encampment  has  a  long  list  of  sons  and 
daughters  who  have  achieved  distinc- 
tion in  the  varied  walks  of  civil  and 
military  life.  You  know  them  all.  I 
will  not  particularize  only  to  mention 
that  this  territory  has  furnished  four 
governors  for  Vermont  and  one  secre- 
tary of  war  and  United  States  senator, 
and  two  supreme  court  judges. 

Mr  Davis  closed  with  an  earnest 
tribute  to  Vermont  and  her  citizens, 
and  quoted  Prince  Bismarck's  famous 
compliment  to  the  state — namely:  "To 
be  a  son  of  Vermont  is  glory  enough 
for  the  greatest  citizen." 

Chairman  Bigelow,  in  introducing 
the  next  speaker,  said  :  "The  town  of 
Cavendish  has  furnished  a  great  many 
strong  men — men  strong  in  its  local 
affairs,  and  in  the  affairs  of  the  state 
and  nation.  I  cannot  well  call  the 
long  roll  of  families  that  have  been 
prominent  in  its  affairs,  but  I  wish  to 

mention  the  familv  from  whom  Proc- 
torsville  derived  its  name.  It  is  a 
matter  for  regret  that  it  is  not  possi- 
ble to  have  with  us  today  a  daughter 
of  that  family,  86  years  of  age,  90 
many  of  whose  years  were  9pent  here — 
Mrs  Wm.  Smith— and  for  whom  W6  al- 
ways have  had  and  always  will  have 
the  deepest  affection.  The  early  mem- 
bers of  this  family  were  unusually 
strong  men  and  took  a  prominent  part 
in  all  local  affairs.  Later  they  fur- 
nished the  state  of  Vermont  two  gov- 
ernors,  one  of  them  Cavendish's  moat 
illustrious  son,  the  Hon  Redfield  Proc- 
tor, who  served  the  state  so  many  years 
as  governor  and  United  States  senator, 
and  who  throughout  his  long  career  as 
secretary  of  war  and  United  States  sen- 
ator so  ably  maintained  the  high  pres- 
tige the  state  of  Vermont  has  always 
held  in  governmental  affairs,  a  prestige 
entirely  disproportionate  to  the  size  of 
the  state,  and  who  was  known  and  rec- 
ognized every  whers  as  one  of  the  strong 
men  of  this  nation.  It  is  our  rare 
good  fortune  to  have  with  us  this  af- 
ternoon his  son — who  is  not  only  one 
of  the  busiest  men  in  the  state  of  Ver- 
mont, but  keeps  more  people  busy 
than  any  other  man  in  the  state." 

Ex=Governor  Proctor. 

Ex-Governor  Fletcher  D.  Proctor 
was  then  presented  and  received  a  cor- 
dial greeting.  He  spoke  briefly,  re- 
ferring to  the  occasion  as  one  of  real 
merit  and  genuine  pleasure,  and  ex- 
pressed his  personal  gratification  at 
the  opportunity  to  visit  the  town  at 
such  a  time.  He  reminded  his  listeners 
that  while  but  a  small  part  of  his  own 
life  had  been  spent  there,  Cavendish 
was  for  many  generations  the  home  of 
his  father's  and  his  mother's  families. 
He  told  of  the  rivalry  which  at  one 
time  existed  a9  between  Duttonsville 
(where  the  Duttons  lived)  and  Proc- 
torsville  (where  the  Proctors  lived), 
and  the  expectation  that  the  marriage 
of  a  Proctor  with  a  Dutton  would  do 
away  with  this  rivalry.  The  ex-Gov- 
ernor referred  to  the  strong  character 
and  great  ability  of  his  grandmother 
Proctor,and  his  father's  devotion  to  her 
and  love  and  reverence  for  her  mem- 
ory ;  and  referred  to  the  stones  in  the 

«metery  as  proving  how  many  mem- 
bers of  the  two  families  with  which  he 
was  directly  connected  had  lived  and 
-died  in  the  town.  The  speaker  urged 
the  desirability  of  memorials  like  this 
tablet  as  reminders  of  past  unselfish 
service  and  sacrifice — memorials  which 
should  lead  us  to  appreciate  more  fully 
our  duty  as  citizens.  He  emphasized 
the  deep  interest  which  the  late  Sena- 
tor Proctor  had  always  felt  in  the  town 
of  Cavendish  and  its  development; 
touched  upon  the  historic  associations 
which  cluster  around  this  locality; 
and  from  the  standpoint  of  a  loyal 
Vermonter  eulogized  his  state  and  all 
it  stood  for,  urging  the  continued  cul- 
tivation of  the  patriotism  and  devotion 
that  had  made  possible  the  proud  po- 
sition Vermont  had  attained. 

Allen  M.  Fletcher. 

The  chairman  then  referred  to  an- 
other family  which  played  an  import- 
ant part  in  the  town's  early  history, 
and  which  furnished  the  state  with  a 
governor  and  a  lieutenant-governor — 
the  Fletcher  family.  He  did  not  claim 
the  gift  of  prophecy,  and  so  could  not 
say  definitely  whether  Cavendish  would 
•ever  furnish  the  state  with  another 
governor  by  that  name  or  not;  but  he 
introduced  Hon  Allen  M.  Fletcher, 
calling  on  him  for  a  word  or  two.  Mr 
Fletcher  spoke  of  the  fact  that  this 
country  had  been  originally  settled  by 
the  Puritan  in  New  England,  and  the 
cavalier  in  the  South,  and  from  these 
two  strains  our  citizenship  has  largely 
sprung.  He  had  sometimes  thought  it 
would  have  been  better  for  the  nation 
if  we  could,  in  our  development,  have 
kept  more  closely  to  these  two.  He 
spoke  of  the  coming  of  the  millions  of 
foreigners,  and  said  we  must  make  the 
best  of  it  and  assimilate  these  strang- 
ers to  our  advantage  and  theirs.  The 
speaker,  taking  up  a  remark  by  ex-Gov 
Proctor,  jocosely  referred  to  the  good 
judgment  displayed  by  the  late  Sena- 
tor Proctor  in  naming  his  son 

A  Descendant  of  the  Smith  Fam= 
ily  Speaks. 

In  introducing  the  next  speaker, 
William  Smith  of  Springfield,  a  son  of 
the  William  Smith  whose  life  was  so 

completely  connected  with  the  devel- 
opment of  this  section  of  country,  Mr 
Bigelow  paid  due  tribute  to  the  char- 
acter of  this  citizen  of  the  early  days, 
referring  to  him  as  a  grand  type  of 
pure-minded  and  unselfish  manhood. 
The  ancestor,  James  Smith,  who  rep- 
resented Cavendish  in  the  legislature 
for  13  consecutive  years,  was  also 
eulogized.  Then  the  Springfield  repre- 
sentative of  the  name  was  presented 
and  made  a  short  address.    He  said: 

It  is  not  an  easy  undertaking  to  fit- 
tingly express  m>  pleasure  at  being 
able  to  come  here  on  this  particular 
occasion.  I  think  our  friend,  Mr. 
Spaulding,  has  earned  our  thanks  for 
his  public-spirited  and  untiring  efforts 
that  have  made  it  possible,  and  am 
sure  each  of  you  will  thank  him  your- 

Personally,  the  scene  presents  more 
than  a  passing  interest.  Not  only  do  I 
see  the  home  of  my  birth,  but  the  hills, 
woods,  fields,  brooks  and  roads  that 
surround  it;  the  setting  has  changed 
little,  the  detail  more;  one  misses  some 
oldtime  familiar  trees,  buildings  and 
faces.  They  are  changed  or  forever 
gone.  *  *  My  grandfather,  James 
Smith,  acquired  this  farm  about  1790, 
and  until  1888  the  farm  had  had  but  two 
owners.  The  very  names  of  my  grand- 
father's neighbors  are  also  gone,  or  to 
be  found  only  on  the  headstones  in  the 
cemetery  two  miles  distant.  It  is  in- 
teresting to  recall  those  names — Hall, 
Wheeler,  Bates,  Spaulding,  Fullam, 
French,  Parker  and  others. 

Between  the  Reading  line,  the  north 
limit  of  my  father's  farm,  and  the  top 
of  the  hill  one  mile  this  side  of  Proc- 
torsville,  in  the  valley  of  the  brook  and 
road,  I  can  name  to  you  at  least  thir- 
teen locations  where  I  have  seen  either 
the  buildings  or  cellar  excavations, 
and  where  today,  in  some  cases,  there 
is  hardly  a  trace  of  even  the  excava- 
tions. The  only  new  additional  house 
I  recall  in  the  district  named  is  on 
Mrs  Spaulding's  farm.  There  are  the 
locations  only  of  eight  distinct,  now 
extinct,  local  industries  in  the  same 
territory;  the  sawmill  is  the  sole  per- 
manent industry  now  alive. 

The  number  of  the  people  has  also 
lessened,  just  how  many  in  40  years  I 
cannot  say.  In  our  neighboring  town 
of  Reading,  I  am  told,  there  are  some 
600  or  700  inhabitants,  as  against  1300 

or  1400  fifty  years  ago ;  and  I  question 
if  Cavendish,  even  with  her  two  vil- 
lages and  factories,  has  maintained 
her  number  of  inhabitants  of  fifty 
years  ago. 

But  this  is  not  a  historical  address; 
time  forbids.  But  it  is  well  to  stop 
•once  in  a  while  in  our  busy  lives  and 
note  more  carefully  than  in  usual 
thought  the  changes  that  have  occurred 
in  our  own  remembrance  before  mem- 
ory is  too  dimmed  by  the  lapse  of  time, 
and  it  is  increasingly  fitting  to  perma- 
nently mark  in  a  dignified  manner 
with  suitable  memorial,  as  this  carved 
granite  slab,  itself  a  memorial  of  a 
local  oldtime  industry,  the  places  and 
events  that  filled  the  lives  of  our  fore- 
fathers. After  all,  in  the  last  analysis 
it  is  what  people  do  that  counts.  We 
forgive  hasty  speech  when  the  actions 
•square,  but  we  do  not  forgive  the  ac- 
tions that  give  the  lie  to  fair  speech. 

Our  growth  and  progress  spring 
mainly  from  three  sources,  the  in 
stincts  planted  in  us  by  nature  and 
heredity,  the  recorded  experiences  of 
others  before  us  or  among  us,  and  our 
own  experiences;  the  inventor  and 
genius  stand  in  classes  by  themselves. 
#  * 

Without  knowing  their  mind  in  the 
matter,  we  can  safely  accuse  the  build- 
ers of  not  having  followed  the  line  of 
least  resistance  in  locating  their  roads. 
Tne  mind  and  trail  of  an  Indian  are 
usually  direct,  but  not  always  adapted 
to  the  needs  of  white  men  of  today. 
On  the  whole,  we  must  admit  good 
judgment  in  location,  even  if  it  does 
not  cover  the  route  our  later  sight 
would  assign  to  their  foresight;  they 
did  the  best  they  could,  no  human  be- 
ing does  better  or  more  than  that. 
This  road  restored  to  the  conditions  of 
its  palmiest  days  would  hardly  invite 
the  autoniobilists  of  the  present  day, 
and  yet  it  served  its  place  and  time 
well;  the  people  that  passed  over  it  to 
points  beyond  or  settled  by  the  way 
were  different  from  the  dwellers  of  our 
day.  Notice  the  adjective  "different," 
not  in  the  basic  qualities  that  main- 
tain a  community  or  nation,  so  much  as 
the  adventurous  hardy  spirit  that  sub- 
dues the  wilderness,  overcomes  hard- 
ships and  adds  to  settled  lands. 

These  people  had  their  faults  and 
made  their  mistakes,  as  we  have  our 
faults  and  make  our  mistakes.  No 


people  or  nation  are  without  them,  yet 
few  districts  or  valleys  like  ihis  in 
which  we  are  met  have  less  to  regret, 
or  wish  changbd.  It  has  been  and  is 
the  home  of  an  upright,  law-abiding, 
thrifty  people;  the  vicious,  the  law- 
breaking,  the  lazy  and  shiftless  are 
the  exception.  The  witness  to  these 
statements  cannot  be  denied — the  good 
roads,  the  well  kept  farms,  the  neat 
schoolhouses,  the  people  themselves. 
*  *  The  Almighty  writes  a  legible 
hand  in  his  own  way,  sometimes  rap- 
idly, sometimes  slowly,  and  communi- 
ties no  less  than  people  show  it.  These 
qualities  just  named  add  largely  to 
the  money  value  of  your  farms  and 
homes.  Take  these  qualities  away 
from  the  people,  with  no  observance  of 
the  Sabbath  or  attendance  at  church, 
or  at  least  respect  for  what  the  church 
stands  for,  and  you  soon  have  what  our 
late  President  Roosevelt  taught  us  to 
term  *  'undesirable  citizens  anp  com- 
munities. " 

We  are  not  responsible  for  the  hered- 
ity with  which  we  came  into  the  world. 
We  are  responsible  more  or  less  for  the 
use  we  make  of  our  gifts.  We  are  not 
often  responsible  for  the  experience  of 
others,  but  we  fail  to  grasp  at  all  the 
meaning  of  life  if  we  do  not  fairly  in- 
terpret the  experience  of  others  and 

We  call  this  history.  How  many  of 
us  read  history,  or  have  been  taught  it 
in  the  schoolhouse  yonder?  1  hope  it 
is  taught  differently  than  in  my  school 
days.  The  fact  of  a  battle,  of  a  con- 
vention, or  a  great  movement  is  of  lit- 
tle moment:  the  why  of  it  and  the  re- 
sult of  it  are  everything.  The  facts 
of  the  battles  of  Bunker  Hill  and  Get- 
tysburg are  but  little,  compared  with 
the  understanding  of  why  they  occur- 
red and  the  results  that  tiow  from 
them.  John  Brown  was  hanged  ;  as  a 
fact  what  of  it,  other  people  have  been 
hanged  before  and  since;  but  the  soul 
of  such  events  goes  marching  on. 

We  live  in  the  present  only ;  the  past 
is  beyond  our  grasp  and  the  future  un- 
certain. The  railroad,  the  new  inven- 
tions, the  combinations  of  industry, 
the  changed  demands  of  time,  have 
mostly  destroyed  the  small  industries 
that  at  one  time  filled  this  and  other 
valleys.  The  farm  and  its  alped  inter- 
ests are  alone  left  as  profitable  employ- 

It  is  for  us,  as  it  was  for  our  ances- 
tors and  for  those  who  come  after  us, 
to  make  good  in  our  time  and  place, 
that  it  may  be  said  finally  of  us  not 
only  that  we  have  done  our  work,  not 
only  that  we  have  done  it  well,  but 
that  we  have  each  one  done  our  best. 

Mr.  Smith  emphasized  certain  por- 
tions of  his  address  by  apt  narrative. 

Tablet  Turned  Over  to  the  D.  A.  R. 

In  turning  the  tablet  over  to  the 
care  of  Lucy  Fletcher  chapter,  D.  A. 
R. ,  Mr  Bigelow  spoke  appreciatively 
of  the  work  being  done  in  New  Eng 
land  by  the  Daughters  of  the  Ameri- 
can Revolution,  in  keeping  alive  the 
memory  of  men  and  events  of  colonial 
and  Revolutionary  times.  He  then 
presented  the  tablet  to  the  local  chap- 
ter, to  be  cared  for  during  the  coming 
years,  insisting  that  the  chapter  should 
have  the  hearty  co-operation  of  the 
people  of  this  section  in  whatever 
work  it  undertook. 

Mrs  R.  E.  Hathorn,  regent  of  Lucy 
Fletcher  chapter,  accepted  the  tablet 
in  behalf  of  that  organization;  then 
expressing  thanks  for  the  confidence 
shown  by  the  presentation,  and  prom- 
ising that  the  place  and  the  day  would 
not  be  forgotten  by  members  of  the 
chapter,  and  that  frequent  visits  would 
be  made  to  renew  the  flag  which  had 
been  placed  upon  the  marker,  Mrs 
Hathorn  went  on  to  say  :  It  is  the  ob- 
ject of  the  D.  A  R.  to  perpetuate  the 
memory  of  the  spirit  of  the  men  and 
women  who  achieved  American  inde- 
pendence, by  the  acquisition  and  pro- 
tection of  historical  spots  and  the  erec- 
tion of  monuments;  by  the  encourage- 
ment of  historical  research  in  relation 
to  the  revolution  and  the  publication 
of  its  results;  by  the  preservation  of 
documents  and  relics  and  the  record  of 
the  individual  services  of  Revolution- 
ary soldiers,  by  the  celebration  of  his- 
torical anniversaries.  The  Daughters 
of  Vermont  have  pledged  their  assist- 
ance in  marking  and  restoring  this 
trail  through  our  state.  The  need  for 
this  is  urgent  in  the  extreme,  for  soon 
the  memory  of  living  man  will  not  be 
ours  to  give  advice  and  assistance,  and 
we  are  in  danger  of  losing  all  signs  of 
this  once  famous  of  roads  save  the  few 
mentions  of  it  in  printed  text. 

The  object  of  marking  this  historic 
trail  and  encampment  is  the  same  as 
that  of  marking  any  other  great  battle- 
field of  history.  History  does  not  re* 
cord  a  battlefield  of  greater  endurance, 
and  we  should  take  pride  in  preserving 
and  marking  these  old  boundaries 
which  have  for  us  so  much  interest. 
And  we  must  not  allow  our  past  to  slip 
away  from  us,  but  talk  our  history, 
teach  our  history,  and  live  surrounded 
by  its  memorials.  In  the  measure  we 
keep  the  memories  of  the  heroic  past 
fresh  in  the  minds  of  our  people,  so 
patriotic  fervor  is  fanned,  the  flag 
move  revered,  and  our  national  stabil- 
ity better  assured,  and  I  hope  and 
trust  tbat  every  Daughter  will  person- 
ally give  her  assistance  and  co-opera- 
tion in  this  great  work,  that  future 
generations  may  know  of  the  great 
struggle,  thus  developing  public  opin- 
ion and  affording  to  young  and  old 
such  advantages  as  shall  develop  in 
them  the  largest  capacity  for  perform- 
ing the  duties  of  American  citizens, 
and  to  aid  in  securing  for  mankind  all 
the  blessings  of  liberty. 


The  attendance  is  variously  estimat- 
ed at  from  600  to  850. 

The  stone  post  on  which  the  tablet 
appears,  dated  July  4,  1840,  was  the 
capstone  to  the  old  Ordway  grist  mill; 
its  length  is  14  feet;  it  is  set  in  63^ 
feet  of  solid  concrete,  and  stands  7  1-2 
feet  above  ground. 

A  more  those  present  was  Thomas 
Lane,  who  can  claim  the  proud  dis- 
tinction of  being  the  son  of  a  Revolu- 
tionary soldier.  Mr  Lane  now  has  in 
his  possession  a  portion  of  the  money 
his  father  received  when  his  service  in 
the  Continental  army  was  completed. 

Following  is  an  extract  from  a  letter 
from  Rev  J.  Mervin  Hull  of  Concord, 
Mass.  :  "If  it  were  possible  I  would 
surely  be  present  to  enjoy  and  partici- 
pate in  the  occasion.  On  all  sides  I 
notice  an  awakened  interest  in  histori- 
cal matters,  and  I  regard  it  as  one  of 
the  hopeful  signs  of  the  times.  For 
safe  progress  we  need  a  backward  as 
well  as  a  forward  look,  and  the  cour- 
age, the  devotion,  the  patient  bearing 
of  trials  and  privations,  the  manifes- 
tation of  neighborly  kindness,  the  gen- 

uine  patriotism  of  those  early  days, 
have  many  great  lessons  to  teach  the 
twentieth  century.  Success  to  the 
Twenty-Mile  Stream  day!"  This  is 
but  a  type  of  a  hundred  letters  received 

during-  the  past  two  weeks. 

The  tablet  was  made  by  M.  H.  Mos- 
man  of  Chicopee,  Mass.,  and  i<*  of 
statuary  bronze,  its  size  being  14x19 



FT  223325  5  50